4 Ways to Engage Your Employees Through Feedback

Managerial feedback is a necessity in building stronger ties with your workforce. Many employees want to receive feedback that allows them to see the value of their contributions, but also understand where there’s room for improvement.

While the preferred method may vary, each generation wants consistent feedback. For example, 46% of Generation Z and Millennials prefer consistent, face-to-face feedback from their manager. Both Generation X and Baby Boomers also appreciate regular feedback and aren’t hesitant to initiate the conversation with managers.

Regular feedback creates a two-way conversation that consistently engages employees. According to a report by Salesforce, employees who feel their voice is heard at work are 4.6 times more likely to perform their best work.

Improving the employee feedback process is a concerted effort that furthers open communication with your employees.

Here are four ways to provide effective feedback and encourage engagement within your organization.

1. Set aside time to check in

Set aside time to have a one-on-one meeting with each of your employees at least once a month. This conversation can be an opportunity to catch up and talk about any current projects, get status updates and discuss any challenges that have come up. It’s important to create a two-way conversation that allows the employee not only to receive direct feedback, but also to ask clarifying questions or to suggest ways to overcome a challenge they are facing.

2. Make time for recognition

During a one-on-one conversation, make sure to also recognize an employee for any achievements or successful contributions to team projects in a way that is personalized and quantified. For example, if an employee helped close a deal with a new client, outline the specific ways that their individual involvement mattered.

3. Make getting feedback easy

It’s also important to create options for employees to provide feedback about the organization to pinpoint what’s working well and where improvements might be needed. A pulse survey or a simple QR code, a matrix-style barcode that contains a URL that can be scanned by a mobile phone, can be an efficient way to gather feedback from employees. However, try to limit the number of surveys you send out each quarter, as employees might start to develop feedback fatigue.

4. Take action in real time

Providing and receiving employee feedback is only meaningful when it results in changes taking place when appropriate. This shows employees that their questions, concerns and feedback are being heard by management and leadership and that their feedback could potentially lead to meaningful changes within the organization.

In an interview with the Society for Human Resource Management, Peter Foley and Megan Connolly from employee engagement consultancy Mercer Sirota said, “For employees to trust that the [time] they take out of their day to respond to a survey is worthwhile, they need to see managers sharing the survey responses with their team in a constructive way, asking for ideas on how to improve and making a commitment to these changes.”

Taking the time to provide and gather employees’ insights and creating actionable steps to create changes lets employees know that their perspectives are valued and heard, not only from their direct manager but by the organization as a whole.

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